Japan is extremely proud of their hot springs and loves to shout that love to the world in any way possible. Before now, the historical fiction Thermae Romae was the big push, comparing Japan’s onsen and bath houses to the thermae of ancient Rome.
Now, entertainment startup Enbound has teamed up with Tokyo Otaku Mode and Dai-ichi Kangyo Credit Cooperative to create Onsen Musume, a multimedia franchise teaching fans around the world about the great onsen of Japan as only Japan knows how: by turning them into cute girls.
As the story goes, nine young apprentice goddesses who live in Japan’s hot springs are called together at a school by the onsen god Sukunahito. Their job is to restore the hot springs of Japan to their former glory and bring happiness and healing to their visitors. How? By becoming an idol unit, of course.
The first of the nine Onsen Musume to be revealed is Yuina Kusatsu, presumably meant to represent the popular Kusatsu Onsen of Gunma Prefecture. Voiced by Yuki Takada and designed by Benio, Yuina enjoys manju and trying new restaurants, and is a type B Aries.
More of the Onsen Musume will be revealed over time. For now, you can find out more about them on their official site as they’re premiered.
Source: Tokyo Otaku Mode
Kara Dennison is responsible for multiple webcomics, runs social media and interviews for (Re)Generation Who, and is half the creative team behind the OEL light novel series Owl’s Flower. She blogs at karadennison.com and tweets @RubyCosmos.